America at the Crossroads
The conjunction of Uranus and Pluto
that occurred on the 17th and 18th degrees of Virgo (the zodiacal sign said to "rule" California as a state and Los Angeles as a city) focused the process of the youth rebellion in 1965. This process, of course, has many antecedents, both near and remote, but a cosmic planetary impulse seems to have been released at around this time. A period of massive and dynamic planetary configurations had begun in February 1962 (the last progressed Balsamic Moon in the U.S. chart) when seven planets gathered in the sign of the much-longed-for New Age, Aquarius. There had already been a conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn in Capricorn practically on the Pluto of the U.S. chart when John Kennedy became President, as I mentioned earlier. And early winter of 1963 witnessed a strong array of square aspects — between Jupiter and the slowly forming conjunction of Uranus and Pluto, and between Mars retrograde in Leo and Saturn in Aquarius — the latter directly affecting the natal Moon of the U.S. chart. In 1965 Saturn opposed Uranus, and such an opposition between the forces intent on maintaining the status quo (Saturn) and those striving for basic transformation (Uranus) often generates revolutionary activities.
A gathering of powerful energies was taking place at several levels during the three-year period of the progressed Balsamic Moon that ended in 1965. Following the 1954 publication of Aldous Huxley's The Doors of Perception
, increased interest in LSD and other psychedelic drugs led to experimentation by Timothy Leary and his pioneering New England group. The publicity resulting from this work led to widespread use of the drug by young people fascinated by its powerful effects, until "acid" was declared illegal in October of 1966. In 1967 the psychedelic scene reached its peak in the pitilessly publicized "Summer of Love" in San Francisco.
The 18th degree of Virgo, on which Uranus and Pluto met on October 1, 1965, is symbolized by A Ouija board
. To the clairvoyant, Elsie Wheeler, whose very American mind gave formulation to the archetypal impulses responsible for these Sabian symbols in 1925,(2
) the Ouija board symbolized what at that time constituted man's rather naive approach to superrational and psychically transcendent realms. I commented upon the symbol as referring to a "passive openness to the unconscious." These words characterize the psychedelic movement rather well, though not completely. I also spoke of "inner guidance," and since that time more and more American women and men have depended upon such a guidance in their daily lives, manifesting as "messages" within their head or obtained by some form of automatic and subconscious — or in some cases, superconscious — communications.
The 18th degree of Virgo (17°10') is only six and a half degrees away from the Mid Heaven of the chart for the beginning of the federal government. If we add six years to October 9, 1965, we obtain fall 1971 and the start of the series of events that came to be known as Watergate.
In the chart for the Declaration of Independence, the progressed New Moon of 1965 — which as we already saw is based on an annual eclipse having actually taken Place January 9, 1777, at 3:39 P.M. — occurred at Capricorn 19°51' on a symbol which gives hope for the future and reflects the communal and devotional spirit of many youths involved in group singing of Hindu or Sufi mantrams. Equally striking is the fact that this progressed New Moon, on which the period 1965 to 1995 is based, and particularly the years up to the progressed Full Moon in 1979 (i.e., just before the very important 1980 Presidential Elections) falls almost exactly on President Nixon's natal Sun at Capricorn 19°23', which is the degree of Pluto's North Node
. Evidently Nixon was fated to be President at this crucial time in U.S. history, and the Pluto "influence" began in 1965 — "for better or for worse." Also, the Uranus-Pluto conjunction of 1965 fell in Nixon's first House, less than four degrees away from his natal Ascendant. Three years later he was elected President, a few months after Martin Luther King's assassination (April 4) and, on June 5, the assassination of Robert Kennedy, Nixon's main rival. From 1964 to May 1970, a number of much-publicized riots occurred involving university students and, since the Watts riots in August 1965, black ghetto communities.
A Chart for Richard M. Nixon 9 January 1913 9:17:30 P.M. at Yorba Linda, California
President Nixon was easily reelected in 1972, but to call such an election a "landslide" or a "popular message" would be completely fallacious. What the election returns showed was that a fair, but not spectacular, majority of the American electorate was unwilling to accept the prospect of what had been rather senselessly publicized as radical changes in the economic and political structure of the nation, and did not feel that the Democratic contender — the only real alternative to Nixon — had the decisiveness of character necessary to handle the office of President, or the ability to build an effective organization around himself.
Cf. Dane Rudhyar, An Astrological Mandala
By permission of Leyla Rudhyar Hill
Copyright © 1974 by Dane Rudhyar
and Copyright © 2001 by Leyla Rudhyar Hill
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